Frankenwords : they're alive but for how long : The guardian by Andy Bodle vocable numéro 732

Voir le sujet précédent Voir le sujet suivant Aller en bas

Frankenwords : they're alive but for how long : The guardian by Andy Bodle vocable numéro 732

Message  MurielB le Mer 4 Mai - 22:02

Hi everyone !
I have just come across a very interesting article about about the new portmanteau words present in every walk of life
For instance :
smirting (smoking+flirting)=>flirter tout en fumant à l'extérieur d'un lieu public
gaydar (gay+radar)=>capacité à deviner l'orientation sexuelle d'une personne
guesstimate (guess+estimate)=>pifomètre
chunnel (channel+tunnel)=>tunnel sous la manche
metrosexual (metropolitan+sexual)=>hétérosexuel qui soigne beaucoup son apparence
stagflation (stagnation+inflation)=>croissance faible ou nulle combinée à une forte inflation
glamping (glamour+camping)=>hébergement tout confort dans la nature
buffyverse (Buffy+universe)=>univers de la série Buffy contre les vampires

some have been with us for over half a century like
liger(lion+tiger)
paratroops(parachute+troops)
ginormous(gigantic+enormous)
transistor(transfer+resistor)
telethon(television+marathon)
Motel(Motor+hotel)
although it is true that they have come to the fore in the last few years
one might wonder which coinages will endure ?

_________________
Merci de me faire part des grosses fautes dans mes messages en langue étrangère. Grâce à vos remarques, je pourrai m'améliorer :-)
avatar
MurielB
Admin

Messages : 11727
Lieu : Calais
Langues : Français (Langue maternelle), Gb, De, It, Es

Voir le profil de l'utilisateur

Revenir en haut Aller en bas

Here is what makes them last

Message  MurielB le Mer 4 Mai - 22:27

1 Completion probability/understandability
Can the average speaker quickly recognise the origins of both parts of the word, and thus easily intuit its meaning? If the source words are recognisable (mockney, bromance), the word is in with a chance. If it’s just two words arbitrarily chopped and slapped together (chugger, dunch, groutfit – is that green outfit? Grey outfit? Great outfit? Or some sort of exercise involving bathroom tiles?), it’s probably doomed.
2 Association
Portmanteaus with root words that have some prior relation, or come from the same general domain, are more memorable. This may be why frenemy and staycation have made some headway, and why the otherwise execrable jeggings is still with us.
3 Applicability
Blend words rarely take off if their meanings are too narrow; hence the demise of pedoeuvre, mankle, emberrorist, foodoir and zootique. I am relatively confident, too, in predicting that Bremain will not stay with us for long after the EU referendum.
4 Naturalness/euphony
Does the hybrid word feel English? Does it have the cadences and sound sequences typical of the language – or is it an assault course for the mouth? Root words that share a syllable, or at least a sound, help in this regard. Thus glitterati, gaydar and hacktivism have a shot at immortality; legacyquel, condesplaining, privelobliviousnessand gymtimidation, one fervently hopes, do not. 

5 Fun factor
Lignos and Prichard found that more explicitly humorous words and words connected with pop culture tended to go down well; sharknado and sheeple were among the winners of their survey.
To these I would add: 

6 Uniqueness
Is the result too close in sound or spelling to an existing word? I refer you to Deano’s marvellous speech in the sitcom Gavin and Stacey: “Can I have tea in the bottom half of the mug, and coffee in the top half of the mug, please? I call it toffee. Or cea. But you can’t ask for that in a cafe, cos they just bring you a toffee. Or a key.” Also, turducken. 

7 Redundancy
If there’s already a perfectly good word to describe the concept you’re trying to convey, kindly keep your chillax to yourself. 

8 Ick factor
Do we really need to hear about this wizard new concept of yours? A surprising number of neologisms are in questionable taste. Feminazi, hasbian and frape are offensive on all sorts of levels, and in an age when most of us are moving away from gender specificity – changing policeman topolice officer and fireman to firefighter, substituting gender-neutral they for he– it seems odd to be introducing words like momager, mompreneur andmanspreading.

9 Tone
Just as onomatopoeia and reduplications often feel slightly childish, and abbreviations have a whiff of informality about them, so portmanteau words can come across as flippant – like rejected Sun newspaper headlines. (It’s salutary to remember that the most enthusiastic adopters of blend words tend to be politicians and PRs.) If your concept is at all serious or high-minded, you might want to consider something with a little more gravitas, such as a loanword. (Such asgravitas.) 

Before you write me off as a member of the bitterati, making snobservations about these linguistic abombinations, I should point out that I love me a good portmanteau. At their best, they’re succinct and witty, and you can tell immediately what they’re driving at. 

Moreover, the craze for Frankenwords has had a useful side-effect: the formation of new affixes. When one neologist coined sugarholic on the model of alcoholic in 1965, it suggested that the letter cluster “-aholic” meant “addict (when in fact it’s from “alcohol”, from Arabic “al-kuhul”, “the kohl”, plus the -ic suffix). This allowed the subsequent coinage of workaholic, sexaholic, shopaholic and chocoholic (although curiously, you never hear mention of drugaholics, pornaholics or fagaholics). Similar fates have befallen the -thon of marathon (telethon, snogathon), the -kini of bikini (monokini, mankini, burqini), the -gate of Watergate (Squidgygate, Betsygate, Plebgate), -tastic, -burger and -erati. 

But while I can just about live with skort (skirt + short), I can barely bring myself to type athevening. How do you even say it? Does the stress fall on the first syllable, the second, or both? And out of context, how on earth is anyone supposed to know what it means? (For those who can’t bring themselves to click on the link, it’s “athletic + eveningwear”.)

At their best, they should be  succinct and witty and you can tell immediately what they are driving at ...of course !

_________________
Merci de me faire part des grosses fautes dans mes messages en langue étrangère. Grâce à vos remarques, je pourrai m'améliorer :-)
avatar
MurielB
Admin

Messages : 11727
Lieu : Calais
Langues : Français (Langue maternelle), Gb, De, It, Es

Voir le profil de l'utilisateur

Revenir en haut Aller en bas

Voir le sujet précédent Voir le sujet suivant Revenir en haut


 
Permission de ce forum:
Vous ne pouvez pas répondre aux sujets dans ce forum